Boot / system issues


This is going to sound weird, but bear with me please. I have an old Toshiba A100 which has unfortunately lost it’s ability to boot from anything other than the installed HDD. (Honestly – I’ve tried everything. It used to work, now it doesn’t). I’d like to put a simple Linux distro on it simply for browsing, messaging, mail, etc but I’m, limited by the fact that I can’t boot from CD/DVD/USB etc. Would it be possible to move the HDD into another laptop chassis, and install the new system to it there, and then could I move the HDD back to the Tosh? Or would the necessary drivers etc be totally wrong and prevent me booting/updating the installed system?

Alternatively is it possible to install something like a Live system to a Hard drive and then move that back to the Tosh? If so, which Live distro would allow this?



Absolutely you can (as long as you don’t install any proprietary graphics drivers before you move the drive back to the original PC) … unlike Windows, you can move a drive between PC’s and it should just adjust itself to the new hardware.

In fact that’s the reason LiveCD/LiveUSB’s work … hardware is detected and the required drivers loaded AT EACH BOOT.

BTW, Welcome to the forum :slight_smile:


Many thanks for the reply. That’s really good to know.

Just so I am clear on this, is this the correct approach :-
[ol]- Fit target disk to bootable laptop.

  • Boot Live system of choice.
  • Use inbuilt install program to install to target disk.
  • Fit target disk to original machine.
  • Boot target machine into new system[/ol]

That seems OK. But note and make sure BIOS will BOOT from USB, DVD , Hard drive.
Have you tried a USB key with Live knoppix Linux system? Or Live Linux DVD of Knoppix. I use Knoppix as my main testing Linux.